The AC Ace is a classic British sports car that was produced by the AC Cars company from 1953 to 1963. The car was designed by John Tojeiro and originally featured a lightweight tubular frame and aluminum bodywork.
The AC Ace was powered by a variety of engines over its production run, including a Bristol inline-six engine, a Ford inline-four engine, and a Ford V8 engine. The most famous and successful version of the car was the Ace Bristol, which was powered by a 2.0-liter Bristol engine that produced 125 horsepower. This engine, which was originally designed for use in airplanes, was known for its smoothness and high-revving capabilities.
The AC Ace was known for its sleek and stylish design, which featured a long hood, a low-slung profile, and distinctive fender flares. The car’s interior was spartan but functional, with a simple dashboard and minimal creature comforts.
The AC Ace achieved significant racing success in the 1950s and early 1960s, particularly in the hands of privateer racers. The car won its class at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1959, and it also competed in a number of other endurance races and hillclimbs. The Ace’s racing success helped to establish AC Cars as a respected manufacturer of high-performance sports cars.
In 1961, the AC Ace was famously chosen by Carroll Shelby as the basis for his legendary Shelby Cobra. Shelby replaced the Ace’s Bristol engine with a Ford V8 engine and added a number of other modifications to create one of the most iconic sports cars of all time.